The former men’s lacrosse locker room was anything but fit for a nationally ranked team. Head Coach Chris Ryan knew it was time for an upgrade.
“The old locker room was terrible. It was falling apart, the lockers were old, they barely served their purpose anymore, the ceiling was falling down and it was just a mess. This was pretty much an extreme makeover from what we had before,” Ryan said.
The locker room was built in stages, beginning in the summer. The ceiling was torn out in June, followed by a new one being put in during mid-July. The lighting and lockers were added on Sept. 10, and the finishing touches were added until Homecoming weekend for the men’s lacrosse alumni game.
“This is 100 steps up from what we had before. It’s a project we had been thinking about doing for the past 15 years, We just had to get the timing right and we were waiting for the program to mature,” Ryan said.
With the first undefeated record in the school’s history last season, the Lakers are hoping the new locker rooms will set the bar for yet another unforgettable season.
“I think this really sets the tone for years to come. You’re going to find something like this for a DII men’s lacrosse team. It shows all the support and interest in the program, especially with the school and how they helped. It really speaks highly of the school and what we have to offer,” Ryan said.
With an addition of 15 new freshmen, and two transfers, the team is now up to 48 players and is looking to stand out more than ever before.
“It’s pretty much our locker room. There are exactly 48 lockers, and we were able to sell every locker to an alumni, meaning a graduated player bought a locker for a current player,” Ryan said.
“Parents, alumni and various people participated in helping to raise money for this project,” said Ryan. “We could not have done without all the support that we get with our program.”
The annual alumni game on Sept. 21, brought back over 40 alumni players.
“It has become a really big tradition for us as a team. We always have a great turnout. Yes, it’s a chance for us to evaluate our new players, but it’s mostly about us all coming together and having fun,” Ryan said.
“It’s been 15 years of success, so now we’re trying to uphold the standards and high goals that we have set. We’re in a new conference this year and we have high hopes to be in the playoffs again this year,” Ryan said.
The Lakers look forward to another successful year with their new locker room.